Getting to Bariloche

Getting to Bariloche

Argentina Ski Adventure

Where is Bariloche?

Bariloche is the gateway to the Lakes District of northern Patagonia in Argentina. Bariloche sits on the southern shores of Lake Nahuel Huapi in the Nahuel Huapi National Park. San Carlos de Bariloche is located within the Rio Negro Province of Argentina, 1,621 km southwest of Buenos Aires.

Bariloche is close to the Chile border with the Cardenal Antonio Samore Pass crossing the Andes between Chile and Argentina.

Flights to Bariloche

There are regular flights from Buenos Aires to Bariloche Airport (BRC). The flight between Buenos Aires and Bariloche is only 2 hours. Use our flight search engine or google flights to look at route and rates for flights to Bariloche.

Some flights go in and out of Ezeiza International Airport (EZE), but most of the flights originate from the Jorge Newbery Airport (AEP – Buenos Aires domestic airport). For international travellers this can be a little inconvenient because it necessitates an hour long transfer via bus or taxi from the international airport to the domestic airport, or an overnight stay in one of the hotels in Buenos Aires. There are also flights on some days between Santiago in Chile and Bariloche.

There are also semi-regular flights between Bariloche and El Calafate and Esquel.

Bariloche Airport Transfers

The Bariloche airport is about 15km east of central Bariloche. There are buses between the airport and town, or you can get a door-to-door remise or taxi.

Bariloche Car Rentals

Bariloche airport and city both have lots of car rental agencies, and because of all that competition it is one of the most inexpensive places in Argentina to rent a car.

Bariloche has the big brand car rental agencies such as Thrifty, Budget, Hertz and Avis. SUVs or 4WD vehicles are somewhat hard to come by (especially at a reasonable price) and the cars don’t come “skierised” with roof racks or the like, but you can generally rent out snow chains for an additional fee. The obvious advantage of using one of the big brands is that you can easily pre-book a car (you can use a car rental search facility to look for the best rates), and work with a company that you can trust. You also have the flexibility to pick-up and drop-off the car at different destinations. We’ve used Hertz in the past, and the staff could speak English which was also rather handy.

Bariloche also has a range of small car rental operators that offer car rental at prices that are cheap, cheap, cheap. You get what you pay for!

Bus to Bariloche

Bariloche is a major hub of the Argentina bus system so there are plenty of buses that head to Bariloche.

Buses from Retiro Buenos Aires leave frequently and the trip to Bariloche takes about 20 to 25 hours. Classes vary from semi-cama to fully reclined first class seats.

There are also various buses between Bariloche and Villa la Angostura, San Martin de los Andes, El Bolson, Mendoza, and Osorno in Chile.

The bus terminal is located about 3km east of central Bariloche, next to the train station on RN237 (12 de Octubre). It is accessible from downtown via regular local buses 10, 20, and 21, or a taxi is reasonably inexpensive.

Getting Between Bariloche and Cerro Catedral

The Cerro Catedral ski resort is located 20km from central San Carlos de Bariloche; a 25 minute drive. The drive up the mountain is often very easy considering that the road is wide and fully paved, although sometimes it’s very icy and snow chains may be required. The day car park close to the slopes at Cerro Catedral attracts a fee, whilst there is parking further afield for free.

If you don’t have a rental car, the other alternative to get to Cerro Catedral is to catch a taxi (with a meter) or a remise where you can negotiate a fixed price. The latter is generally a little cheaper, so this is a good option if there are a few of you. Taxis and remises are readily available at Cerro Catedral to get back to Bariloche. Uber is another option.

A cheaper option is to catch one of the semi-regular and inexpensive buses from downtown Bariloche. Unfortunately the buses can be really packed and there’s always the potential that you might not get on at all.

Rideway Airport Transport, Transfers & Shuttles Rideways - Airport Transfers, Taxis & Executive Cars
Rideways is a global aggregation search-engine for airport transfers, taxis and executive cars. This is an ideal way to start your research and potentially book your transport services in this area.

Other Ski Resorts Nearby

In addition to being home to Cerro Catedral, Bariloche is also the gateway to other Patagonia and Lakes District ski resorts. A great way to sample multiple Patagonia ski resorts and potentially cat skiing or sled skiing, is with a guided multi-day tour.

Cerro Bayo is located 70km north of Bariloche near the really beautiful town of Villa la Angostura.

Cerro Chapelco is located near the town of San Martin de los Andes which is few hours drive north. Chapelco ski resort probably isn’t as good as Catedral in-bounds, but worth visiting if you want a bit of variety or want to hit the sidecountry or backcountry.

The Perito Moreno ski area is located near El Bolson (120km south). You’d probably only head to Perito Moreno if you also wanted to check out the famous El Bolson market and wanted simple cheap family merriment.

Or further south is La Hoya, a fun ski resort for off-piste riding. La Hoya is located near the town of Esquel which is 282km (175 miles) south of Bariloche.